A Message From Academic Affairs
First Year Connection
The change to the new calendar does more than provide us with longer Christmas and spring breaks (although I doubt we’ll hear too many complaints about that!). It also gives us the opportunity to rethink the way we orient the newest members of our community to life at Augustana. The new First Year Connection program will actually begin when students come to campus in the summer. We want students to see this visit as accomplishing more than registering for classes. We have expanded the visit days to nine, reducing the visiting cohort by half. Students will be given new opportunities to meet with current students and to bond with members of their incoming class.
The Connection program will continue in the fall with a new schedule of orientation activities. By adding one day to the Fall Connection, we have been able to arrange one-on-one meetings with first year advisors, expand the alcohol awareness programming, and offer an evening Concert on the Quad. We are particularly excited about the new self-selected Saturday activity. First year students will spend half of the day away from campus with a group of students with similar interests. Some will be biking along the Mississippi with Jeff Abernathy; others will be staffing an on-campus Red Cross blood drive; one group will be working on a build with Habitat for Humanity. We hope that this event will help our students to see themselves not only as Augustana students, but also as members of the Quad Cities community.
More detailed information and a full schedule of events will be coming soon. I hope that the move off of Labor Day weekend will make it possible for more faculty members to participate in the wide variety of events we will be offering. If you are interested in jumping on board as a first year advisor, Augie Reads discussion leader or to participant in a Saturday morning activity, please let me know!
– Nancy Loitz